Volvo Recalls 360,000 Cars for Speed Control Problem

Volvo, a unit of Ford Motor Co. (F), is recalling about 360,000 cars because of a problem with vehicle speed controls that can cause engines to lose power without warning, Volvo said Friday.

Volvo said a defect in the electronic throttle module in cars built between 1999 and 2002 could cause the vehicle to shift into a "limp home" mode in which the maximum speed is about 15 miles per hour.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) ordered the Volvo recall.

The recall applies to Volvo C70 and V70 models built between 1999 and 2002, S60 models built between 2001 and 2002, and S70 and V70X models built between 1999 and 2000.

Volvo spokesman Christer Gustafsson said the automaker has fixed the speed control problem on about 165,000 vehicles of the recall total after sending out notices to owners in March.

California's Air Resource Board had first flagged the throttle control problem. NHTSA informed Volvo that it was making the recall mandatory earlier this month, Gustafsson said.

Volvo owners who bring their cars to dealerships will have new software reinstalled for the throttle control unit, he said.

"We're already doing about 2,000 or 3,000 of these a week," the Volvo spokesman said.

The "limp home" setting is a safety feature in Volvo cars intended to prevent unintended acceleration in case of a throttle malfunction, Gustafsson said.

Separately, the NHTSA said DaimlerChrysler's Chrysler Group (DCX) was recalling about 128,000 Pacifica sport utility vehicles because of a problem with the software governing the fuel pump and power train control.

The NHTSA said the defect could cause the engine to stall in some cases. The recall applies to Pacifica models built between 2005 and 2006.

Chrysler dealers will reprogram the power train controls and relace the fuel pump on certain cars as part of the recall, the NHTSA said in its recall notice.